He's one of the finest performers in Indian cinema today but even after all the success he's achieved, Nawazuddin Siddiqui's struggle isn't exactly over.
Recently, during the promotions of the actor's upcoming release, Babumoshai Bandookbaaz, the film's casting director made a derogatory remark about Nawaz's skin tone and how they couldn't fair-looking actors opposite him. It was utterly racist and Nawaz called him out in a tweet that then found a lot of support from his fans as well as the film fraternity.
However, as expected, when the controversy became big, the casting director claimed he was misquoted and promptly retracted his statement.
But what this incident did was point out Bollywood's ridiculous obsession with fair skin and how it treats people who aren't fair skinned, no matter how talented they may be.
Speaking about the incident, in a recent interview with IANS, Nawaz spoke about how it's a battle he's been fighting since the beginning of his career.
In those days, I used to work on a daily basis for television shows as a junior artiste. Because of my brown complexion, people used to say, 'We can't take you... we have to put extra light to make you visible, you are dark and we don't have time.'
He says that even after spending over 12 years in the industry, he's still struggling with the same issue.
Even after 12 years, nothing much has changed. People call me 'unusual'. They say that a dark-skinned man is too unusual to become a hero of a mainstream film
It's surprising that in a country that's majorly populated with brown-skinned people, Bollywood still believes that fair is indeed lovely.
In our country, a majority of the population have dark skin complexion. Even I have dark complexion, which means I represent the majority. I want to ask, how am I the 'unusual' when I represent the maximum?
Our country's obsession with fair skin needs to end pronto!